VCU Honors College

Research Opportunities

Research abroad

In conjunction with Virginia Commonwealth University’s Global Education Office, the Honors College wants to encourage students who are interested in spending time abroad to also consider conducting research overseas.

Research can be performed either as course credit or internships. While there are countless opportunities for students to both study abroad and partake in research, we would just like to highlight a few options in a variety of locations.

Note: The Honors College does not endorse any of these programs. The following information is given in conjunction with the Global Education Office at VCU; contact their office for more detailed information.

Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences
Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (formerly Bermuda Biological Station for Research) offers students the opportunity to obtain up to four months of hands-on experience working with a scientist on an ongoing project in atmospheric studies, chemistry, ecology or marine biology. Located in Saint George’s, Bermuda, BIOS allows students to conduct research both in and out of the classroom, with facilities that include lecture halls, laboratories and oceanographic vessels.

DAAD: German Academic Exchange Service
Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst, or the German Academic Exchange Service, sponsors grants for summer study and research in Germany. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and currently enrolled or teaching at accredited U.S. universities or colleges. Programs offer courses in economics, social sciences, languages and cultural studies, natural sciences, computer sciences, engineering, medicine, agriculture, and the visual and performing arts. Proficiency in reading German is expected, but many courses are also taught in English.

Earthwatch allows volunteers to join research scientists in fields such as archaeology, marine biology, animal behavior, ecology and anthropology on projects all over the world. Expeditions take place year-round for two to three weeks at a time.

EuroScholars is a unique program that allows students to apply for research-intensive programs in universities that are internationally recognized for their outstanding, specialized research. Participating universities are located in Belgium, Finland, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland, offering students a unique blend of academics, culture and research.

Hansard Scholars Program
The Hansard Society for Parliamentary Government, in conjunction with the London School of Economics and the University of London, offers the opportunity for students to become involved in the workings of the British government and politics, accompanied by a comprehensive study of British politics and public policy. Students are mainly assigned internships with members of Parliament, but also to political parties and think tanks.

Institute for Central American Development Studies
The Institute for Central American Development Studies offers semester-long and summer programs in Central American social and environmental issues in Belize and Costa Rica. Over 40 structured internships and research opportunities are available in each country in the areas of agriculture, development, environment, health and women’s studies.

LEXIA Exchange International
LEXIA offers summer and semester academic programs with a research component in Argentina, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Italy, Poland and South Africa. Classes are taught in English, but intensive language study is required during the first phase of the program. A multidisciplinary course introduces the history, politics, economics, geography and culture of the host country. Students then pursue an independent, well-defined field research project, which offers the opportunity to pursue an independent, self-designed project in a specialized field of interest that is supervised by a faculty member, professional or other mentor. Internships are also available.

VCU partnership universities

There are opportunities for conducting research while studying at one of our partnership universities. If interested, please contact the Global Education Office to see which of their advisers can best help.

School for Field Studies
School for Field Studies offers students the opportunity to obtain field training before graduation by providing an experienced-based education in environmental issues, including the sustainable management of natural resources. Hands-on field studies and research sites are available in Australia, Canada, the Caribbean, Costa Rica, Kenya, Mexico and the Pacific Islands during fall, spring and summer.

SIT Study Abroad
SIT Study Abroad offers semester-long programs in Australia, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, China, Cuba, Czech Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Kenya, Madagascar, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, the Netherlands, Nigeria, the Northwest Coast First Nations, Palestine, Polynesia (Western Samoa), Russia, Spain, South Africa, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Venezuela, Vietnam and Zimbabwe. Semesters can be combined thematically and in area studies for a full year abroad. Intensive language study, home-stays, field study and independent research are integral parts of every program.

International research grants and scholarships

We understand that studying abroad can get expensive: Travel costs, document fees and extra living costs can add up quickly, deterring many students from even beginning the process of applying. Fortunately, there are grants and scholarships that are intended specifically for students conducting research internationally.

While it may seem like a lot of extra work, the benefit will always be worth it. Here are just a few options:

Need help putting together an application, or want to explore more scholarship options? Stop by the National Scholarship Office in the Honors College — they can help you explore many of the options available to students and share helpful tips for making your application stand out.